The Final Chronicle

Can you imagine what the disciples might be feeling right now? It is late Saturday night. Jesus, the teacher, mentor and friend, was crucified yesterday.

What a mixture of emotions! Fear…disappointment…failure? What about anger and loneliness?

These men and women would have thought or even expected Jesus to overthrow the Roman rule and set up His kingdom. They were supposed to be on the winning side!

But now, huddled together, in the shadows, hiding from the authorities, they wait.

Scared and confused.

What would they be waiting for? They probably didn’t know themselves.


Welcome to the Final Chronicle in this Easter series; Chronicles of Calvary.

I have written about some people and even a lamb but tonight’s post will not feature a person. Nor an animal.

It focuses on something different. Something unexpected.

A hill.

A hill called Calvary.

Calvary, also called Golgotha, is located just outside the city of Jerusalem.

Maps - New Testament Bible Maps by Generation Word

This hill, not much more than an outcropping of rock, is the turning point.

On the surface, this hill represents torture, blood, and death. In human eyes, justice is served.

But underneath all of that lies a much different story.

The script is flipped.

Yes, there is still death. Jesus dies. He had to. That was the only way.

Sin is powerful and even victorious – if left unchecked.

But God was never planning on letting it go unchecked.

He had a plan. He always has a plan.

  • Simon was part of God’s plan
  • The Centurion played his part in God’s plan
  • Both criminals were in the plan as well
  • The little lamb that represents the sacrifice for sin is central to the plan

Calvary is part of His plan.


Life is not about you or me.

It is about what God is doing and whether or not we will join Him.

And it all happened on a single hill. God won.

Thank you for taking the time to read this post. I hope it was worth your time.

Mary had a little lamb…

Can you hear the tune in your head?

Mary had a little lamb, little lamb, little lamb…

Cute little guy, isn’t he?

The next character in the Chronicles of Calvary is not about a person. It is a lamb. A one year old lamb without spot or blemish.

We focused on three people for the first three Chronicles. Click on each to read their respective posts.

Simon

Centurion

Two Criminals


There are many aspects to the cross. This post is all about one particular aspect. Sacrifice.

If you have ever tried to read the book of Leviticus in the Old Testament, I am guessing that it was not easy. More so, it could have boring or perhaps really difficult to understand.

The theme of Leviticus is about the sacrificial system that God had set up starting with Moses.

Don’t worry. There will be no Levitical readings here.

Israel, after they escaped Egypt under God’s provisional hand, set about on a journey to the Promised Land.

During that journey, God had given Moses plans and instructions for a tabernacle. This would be a mobile house of worship.

When it was set up, the Levites would be the tribe that would be responsible for the overseeing of all the tabernacle duties; mainly the sacrificing.

Leviticus (named after the tribe of Levi) is the recording of how to do all the tabernacle rituals. Here is one artist’s rendition of the tabernacle.

A Tabernacle for God: Built By The Willing Heart • Spirit Life

But a bigger question that might be looming is one of ‘why’.

Why did God require sacrifice?

Simply stated: Sin was separating God from man. But because God is holy, he could not reside where sin existed. A sacrifice was used to remove the sin from a person or even the whole nation.

It was better to kill one lamb or goat rather than a person. It would not take too long to wipe out Israel if animals were not used as a sacrifice.

For the price of sin to be paid, there must be sacrifice.

Forward into the New Testament. Specifically, John’s gospel.

Here is verse 29 from chapter 1 of John:

“The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, “Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!” NIV


John knew who Jesus is and what his purpose was.

Jesus was to be the sacrifice for our sin.

Hebrews 9:12 states, “He did not enter by means of the blood of goats and calves; but he entered the Most Holy Place once for all by his own blood, thus obtaining eternal redemption.” NIV

Jesus was the lamb that was slaughtered for our sin and he did it at Calvary.

So I guess that little song was right on.

Mary had a little lamb…

tetelestai

Tetelestai.

Do you know any Greek words? (Besides gyro!)

As Jesus was hanging on the cross, he spoke this word, tetelestai. See John 19:30

A summary of its definition would be:

“To bring to an end, complete, fulfill, reaching the end (aim). It is well-illustrated with the old pirate’s telescope, unfolding (extending out) one stage at a time to function at full-strength (capacity effectiveness).”

As you watch the final video in the Suffering Beyond Belief series, think about that phrase.

Jesus completed something but what, exactly, was it?

 

I hope that this practical and scientific look at the suffering of Jesus has been enlightening.

What he did for us is truly amazing.

Is your faith expanded or emptied?

There will be one more post regarding these videos that will recap all of them. Also, in that post, I will share my personal thoughts about Jesus and the cross.

Thank you.

Cranberry Tea Time: It Is Finished

Who am I?

Who am I? Who are you?

A few days ago, I wrote about being included. Click here to read that post.

I mentioned how the people living in these far off places were included by God. As in, God thought that they were important enough for Peter to write to them.

Here are the first three verses of I Peter for reference.

“Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, To God’s elect, exiles scattered throughout the provinces of Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia and Bithynia, who have been chosen according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through the sanctifying work of the Spirit, to be obedient to Jesus Christ and sprinkled with his blood: Grace and peace be yours in abundance.” I Peter 1:1-3 NIV

The saints were included because of the sacrifice that Christ made on the cross.

Let me rearrange the wording: They were Included in Christ.

And because the were included in Christ, they could then Identify with Christ.

  • It is one thing to believe in what Jesus did on the cross.
  • But does that belief equal lifestyle?

When Christ finally died on that cross, something unique happened. It is recorded for us in Matthew 27:51;

“At that moment the curtain of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom.”

From top to bottom! God did the ripping!

ripping of the veil

Now, what was open only to the high priest once a year, the holy of holies was open to the public! Anyone could enter into relationship with God.

The invite is there, we just need to accept and then attend!

I am included in Christ. If you have given your life to him, then you are also included.

Now we can go forward and be identified with Christ.

Let your life match up with your identity. If it be Christ, then live that way.

There is unlimited power and resource. We have access to the Word.

Be the person God desires you to be.

After all, he chose you.

indentity print

Because of P, we get Q.

Before I get into this post, please read my previous post. It is the foundation for today’s message. Here is the link, Two people, a bus, and a gift.

foundations

A through P. That marks my progress so far this year. Today is about the letter Q. This one was more difficult than most of the others. But as I typed the last post, a seed of an idea started to grow. Again, Two people, a bus, and a gift was the beginning and now it will continue.


My best friend is computer/IT guy.

I have a friend who is a medical doctor.

I have another friend who is a financial planner.

My wife is a graphic designer.

My pastor is also my mentor.

What do these people have in common? They are all qualified.

The Word – qualified

The Worth – In any type of setting where a person is receiving something, it is important that the giver is qualified.

In no way would I go to the doctor for a surgery unless I knew that he/she was trained and educated to do the procedure!

It would not make sense to take advice from someone unless they have experience and knowledge in the specific area in which I need advice.

You know what? God is qualified. 

That begs the question, “What is God qualified to do?”

The short answer is that He can do anything because He is God.

But the specific answer is that God is qualified to forgive me and you.

Hebrews 9 talks about the superior quality of Christ’s blood over the blood of goats, calves, etc. that were used in sacrificing. Reading the whole chapter would be better because of the context but I will put verse 12 here for now.

Hebrews 9:12 “He did not enter by means of the blood of goats and calves; but he entered the Most Holy Place once for all by his own blood, thus obtaining eternal redemption.”

The blood of animals was temporary. It did not last. In essence, the animal blood was not qualified to take away sin. But Jesus, who was perfect, eternal, and human, was uniquely qualified for the task of removing sin.

I like that phrase, uniquely qualified. It would be good to remember it.

The Work – Because God is passionate about loving us and Jesus is qualified to remove our sins, we don’t need to try to save ourselves! We can’t do it anyway! Our good works and the like are not qualified to save us.

What we can do is accept this truth by faith. We can rest in the knowledge that God has taken care of everything. His life can flow through us everyday!

Make and spend time with Him today. Thank Him that He is qualified!

And you know what that means? We are now qualified!

When, by faith, we accept His sacrifice, we are now seen as righteous!

We become His tool on earth for His work and His kingdom!

So go out and live purposely because you are qualified to do so!

Qualified With Green Tickmark